On Sat, Mar 14, 2009 at 08:51:02PM -0700, Gary Kline wrote:
> On Sat, Mar 14, 2009 at 08:26:02AM +0100, Roland Smith wrote:
> > On Fri, Mar 13, 2009 at 08:05:59PM -0700, Gary Kline wrote:
> > > > lame -h -V 3 - nobody could tell the difference, it gives <200kbps 
> > > > bitrate
> > > > lame -h -b 192 - as above
> > > > lame -h -b 128 - they were able to tell difference, but not on all 
> > > > music/songs
> > > > 
> > > > lame -h -b 96 - i was able to tell the difference on every song, but it 
> > > > wasn't really huge deal.
> > 
> > >   my hearing is exceptionally good and while call myself an
> > >   audiophile,  having all my tunes right here at fingertips is 
> > >   a major win.  having said that, can you point me to a basic
> > >   tutorial on lame? 
> > 
> > man lame
> 
> 
>       GADGOOKS! that's no tutorial, that's *torture*.  After i finally 
>       got caught up on miised sleep, a few hours ago I read-thru and
>       listened-to (kttsd) the man lame.  Then surfed around; then came
>       back to the man page and read the several examples.  So: the idea
>       is that lame ["just"] converts WAV files to mp3. 

Yep. That's what it does. It's the UNIX philosophy; do one thing and do it well.
If you're not an expert you should probably stick with one of the
--preset modes. E.g. '--preset medium' or '--preset standard'. That will
give you variable bitrate files with good quality.

>       There is a gnome utility, sound-juicer than turns my CD's from
>       wave to ogg-vorbis.  I'm happy with ogg but would prefer flac
>       ... but ogg is fine.  mp4 is a dontknow.  What I've got is good
>       enough for now.

It looks like sound-juicer should be able to make flac files as well:
http://www.burtonini.com/computing/screenshots/sj-prefs.png, probably
depending on if you have the right gstreamer plugins installed. The
freebsd port of sound-juicer depends on the ogg vorbis and flac
gstreamer plugins.

> > >   i've got 1581620 blocks of mp3 @ 128kbit.
> > >   lectures.  when i tried to cut the quality even by a bit it was
> > >   evident immediately.  rar compresses these file to
> > >   1482404 blocks very very slowly.  it probably makes sense to just
> > >   burn the mp3 files to a dvd and be safe.  
> > 
> > There is a special codec for speech. You'll find it the
> > audio/speex port. From the pkg-descr:
> > 
> >   The Speex is a patent-free, Open Source/Free Software voice codec.
> >   Unlike other codecs like MP3 and Ogg Vorbis, Speex is designed to
> >   compress voice at bitrates in the 2-45 kbps range.  Possible
> >   applications include VoIP, Internet audio streaming, archiving of
> >   speech data (e.g. voice mail), and audio books. In some sense, it is
> >   meant to be complementary to the Ogg Vorbis codec.
> > 
> > This might perform better at compressing lectures.

>       Sounds v promising, thanks.  
> 
>       Given the availability of compression these days, it makes me
>       wonder why telephone conversations still sound so 'tinny'.  But
>       then, that's another matter.

The speakers in telephones are tiny. That's probably a large part of it.

The codec used to digitize voice signals for current DECT phones, G.726
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G.726] dates from 1990, so it was limited
to the technology of that time. Modern codecs like speex probably do a
better job!

Roland
-- 
R.F.Smith                                   http://www.xs4all.nl/~rsmith/
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